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civil disobedience

(9 Posts)
Mytwopenceworth Wed 27-Jul-05 14:31:22

when is it (or is it ever) justifiable for protesters and activists to break the law for the sake or their cause?

starlover Wed 27-Jul-05 14:31:52


expatinscotland Wed 27-Jul-05 14:33:22

Nope. And most certainly violence is never acceptable.

Mytwopenceworth Wed 27-Jul-05 14:36:12

What about the point of view that in Britain, although technically a democracy, we only have a chance to have a say in how the country is run every 5 years, and then only indirectly by voting for a political party. This is insufficient for the opinions of the people to be heard properly, and in certain circumstances civil disobedience is both a powerful method of making the will of the public count if it is being ignored. If a certain law is oppressive it cannot be opposed in principle by obeyed in practice out of concern for legality - it must be broken.

mismatch Wed 27-Jul-05 14:37:32

Any examples, MTPW?

Mytwopenceworth Wed 27-Jul-05 14:52:13

poll tax protests?

many demos where protesters lay down in the roads and bring traffic to a standstill?

pensioners organised non payment of council tax to protest at charge rises?

must be many thousands of examples!

dillydally Wed 27-Jul-05 14:53:20

Not in our country but in others where there is no democracy, they can bring it on.

motherinferior Wed 27-Jul-05 14:53:44

Gandhi chucked out the centuries of British occupation through non-violent civil disobedience.

I did a fair bit of anti-nuclear non-violent direct action in the 1980s.

Caligula Wed 27-Jul-05 14:56:15

When the government will not otherwise listen.

There are masses of causes where without civil disobedience, the law would not have been changed.

Universal franchise being one of them. It staggers me that people can say the suffragettes weren't justified in their civil disobedience.

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